Published 13 August 2008
Veda Advantage (NZ) Ltd advocated a move to comprehensive credit reporting today, following a recommendation from the Australian Law Reform Commission for the reform of privacy & credit reporting laws across the Tasman.
The commission recommended that more data be permitted on individual credit files, though it stopped short of embracing full disclosure, and the Australian Government has committed to implementing reform in the next 12-18 months.
Veda Advantage NZ country director John Roberts said: “The current privacy laws in New Zealand & Australia are not open, transparent or fair. They prevent consumers from building a positive credit history and stop lenders from making informed decisions about a customer’s financial situation.’’
He said New Zealand & Australia operated under a “negative” credit-reporting regime, whereas most OECD countries practised comprehensive or positive reporting “With Australia moving away from negative reporting, New Zealand will be just one of 2 OECD countries using this outdated system.”
In New Zealand, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner has begun to formally review the credit reporting privacy code, which contains the barriers to comprehensive positive reporting.
Mr Roberts said: “Today’s credit reports currently provide lenders with just 11% of the picture required to identify & predict credit risk. With the economy currently in recession and statistics from our credit bureau showing that defaults & bankruptcies are on the increase, it is time our Government recognised the need for law reform that will offer more protection to consumers & businesses.’’
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Attribution: Company release, story written by Bob Dey for The Bob Dey Property Report.